Double Cartilage Piercings

  • Written By Dan Hunter on February 15, 2019
    Last Updated: March 17, 2022

Double cartilage piercings are extremely stylish, and are becoming more popular as time goes on. These piercings offer a variation on classic cartilage piercings and allow you to customize your look to a whole new degree.

Of course, any new piercing requires some serious thought, and you’ll be more ready than ever to make the right decision once you know all about the process and what jewelry to pick.

What Is A Double Cartilage Piercing?

Double cartilage piercings are piercings done in a pair in the cartilage of your ear. They can take many forms, although upper ear double cartilage piercings are often the most popular.

In addition, there are helix piercings, which can be done in two areas. Standard helix piercings are normally located on the outer rim of your ear cartilage toward the back of your ear, while forward helix piercings are closer to the cheekbone.

Because of the space required for multiple piercings, most double cartilage piercings are of the helix variety. Industrial piercings are also technically two piercings, as they combine linked helix and forward helix piercings.

What Happens During A Double Cartilage Piercing Procedure?

It’s okay to be a bit nervous before getting piercings done, but knowing what to expect at the studio will help you ease your nerves. Here’s what to expect when you go for a double cartilage piercing.

First of all, you’ll get to pick between a variety of jewelry choices for your piercings. Your body piercer will be able to answer any questions you have about the pros and cons of different jewelry types.

You’ll be asked to sit down and get comfortable, and your body piercer will mark your ear for the piercings themselves. You’ll get to see where the marks are before the piercings take place.

Next is the big moment: your piercer will hold your ear in place and do the piercings themselves. It will hurt, of course, but in many cases, not as bad as you might expect. The piercer will then thread your jewelry into the piercings and attach the backs to your jewelry to finish the job.

After the piercing, you’ll be able to ask any questions you have and you’ll get care instructions for your new (and probably throbbing, which is normal) piercings!

Double Cartilage Piercing Pain – How Much Does It Hurt?

There is a certain amount of pain to be expected with any piercing, and cartilage piercings are no exception to that rule. Many people believe that cartilage piercings are more painful than some other common piercings, such as earlobes or nostrils.

Still, pain threshold is a very individual thing and your ability to tolerate the pain of a double cartilage piercing will be different from someone else’s. While cartilage piercings can be painful, they certainly aren’t so painful as to keep most people who are interested in them from getting them done.

One reason why cartilage piercings can be painful is that cartilage is very tough. While the upper cartilage of your ear isn’t as thick as your earlobe is physically, it is much tougher and tends to be more sensitive when punctured.

How Much Does A Double Cartilage Piercing Cost?

As with all piercings and body modifications or art, cartilage piercing costs can range according to a number of factors, such as how much demand there is at a particular shop, how experienced the body piercer is, local prices for body piercings, and other considerations.

Furthermore, your choice of starting jewelry for a double cartilage piercing will greatly affect your price. This is particularly important because it is not advised to change your initial jewelry for as long as a few months after the procedure is done, so you’ll want to get starter jewelry that you like.

In most cases, you can expect to pay about $20 to $55 per piercing, or $40 to $100 or so in total.

What To Do Before Getting A Double Cartilage Piercing?

You don’t really have to do anything special to prepare for a double cartilage piercing. Here are a few suggestions to make the process a little simpler, though:

You probably want to wear your hair up and have it securely tied so that it’s out of the way for your piercer. If you don’t handle this before you go, you’ll have to do it at the shop anyway, so you might as well plan ahead.

Don’t worry about obsessively cleaning the area you’re going to have pierced, as it will need to be sanitized, anyway. And though your piercing is not likely to bleed much, if at all, it’s best not to wear your nicest new shirt; just in case.

Double Cartilage Piercing Aftercare & Cleaning Guide

Double cartilage piercing care is pretty straightforward. You’ll be given specific instructions, and perhaps a cleaning solution, to use to keep the area of your piercings clean while they heal.

saline solution is the best option for caring for your piercings. If you opt to make your own cleaning solution, simply mix about 1/8 teaspoon of non-iodized sea salt with eight ounces of distilled water. A cotton swab is the best application method for the solution.

There are also piercing aftercare sprays available which contain all of the ingredients required to allow your piercing to heal quickly and efficiently.​

The best aftercare product I’ve personally used is the After Inked Piercing Aftercare Spray. Not only is it vegan, but it’s also completely alcohol and additive-free. The solution works well on all skin types including sensitive skin, and it comes in a generously-sized mist-spraying bottle for easy application. When using it from the very start of the healing process, the spray helps to decrease healing times and aims to eliminate any lingering pain or soreness.​

You’ll generally want to clean the area twice per day, at morning and night. Pat your cartilage dry with a clean paper towel afterward instead of using a towel or washcloth that may have germs on it.

One key consideration is to avoid letting soap and other alcohol-based products touch your new piercings. You’ll also want to avoid letting a lot of shampoo touch the area, as this could cause additional irritation, and may delay healing times.

How Long Does A Double Cartilage Piercing Take To Heal?

Double cartilage piercings are different than earlobe piercings due to the tough nature of cartilage itself. You can expect your piercings to stop hurting within a week or two of when you get them, which is good news.

Just because they stop being sore doesn’t mean your new piercings have healed, however. In fact, you can expect a healing process of three to four months until your double cartilage piercings have completely healed.

While this is the general healing time that most people end up having, longer times do happen on occasion, in which case healing may take several months. One of the most important parts of letting your piercings heal (aside from regular care) is to not change jewelry right away afterward.

Double Cartilage Piercing Infections

While double cartilage piercings don’t tend to get infected as often as other types of piercings, there’s always the chance that any piercing can get infected if it isn’t cared for properly. That’s why following your body piercer’s instructions will be very important.

While the upper cartilage area of the ear doesn’t usually attract a lot of germs and bacteria, there are specific types of infections that can occur. Here’s what to keep an eye out for:

Perichondritis is a specific upper ear condition that can develop if you aren’t careful. With this particular infection, you’re likely to notice redness around the site of the piercing, with pus secretion happening in extreme cases.

Along with being very committed to keeping up with your post-piercing care plan, it’s essential to keep your body piercer in the loop if you have any questions or concerns after you get your piercings done. Asking a question is better than letting a potential problem get worse!

Double Cartilage Piercing Risks

The risks associated with double cartilage piercings are really not that much different from the risks that come with any type of piercing. Because of how thin your upper ear cartilage is, however, many risks associated with other piercings, such as jewelry embedding, are not normally as much of an issue.

As we discussed earlier, your biggest concern will be the potential for cartilage infections, which can be kept at bay by regularly cleaning your new piercings with the simple techniques stated within the aftercare section above.

Another issue that can arise with a double cartilage piercing is the formation of excess collagen, which can lead to a bump appearing around the piercing.​

Again, simply take good care of your new piercings and clean them according to the instructions you’re given at your appointment, and you are unlikely to have any problems! Should any symptoms arise, consult your doctor or body piercer for advice to prevent the complication from worsening.

Double Cartilage Piercing Jewelry

One of the best things about double cartilage piercings is that you can really choose from a wide variety of jewelry to show it your piercings off.

Depending on the placement and your personal style, you can go for posts in white gold, yellow gold, surgical steel, silver, or other materials.

A lot of people also take advantage of the placement of double cartilage piercings by wearing small hoops instead of posts. Try spiral earrings in fun shapes such as hearts to really get creative.


No matter what your sense of personal style is, double cartilage piercings tend to be a great fit for all kinds of looks. With the wide variety of jewelry options available, your options are nearly endless.

Once you’ve gotten past the initial healing stages and cleaned your piercings regularly, double cartilage piercings are a low-maintenance and attractive choice that are sure to accentuate your personal sense of style.​

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